To reduce the risk of flooding in communities living along the coastal and riverine plains, the Federal Ministry of Environment in collaboration with the Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Management Project (NEWMAP), have installed an Automated Flood Early Warning System (AFEWS) in 10 states.
The National Project Coordinator of NEWMAP, Alhaji Salisu Dahiru who disclosed when he led the Project Team to inspect the AFEWS equipment installed in Patani river bank in Delta State listed the states as Delta, Anambra, Imo, Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Sokoto, Kebbi, Adamawa and Taraba.
Dahiru, who was represented by NEWMAP Water Resources Specialist, Mr. Anda Ayuba Yalaks said the installation of the equipment was necessary to give early warning signal to residents living along the coastal plain when the flood rises to particular levels.
He said that the equipment would prevent the ugly incidence of 2012 nationwide flooding that rendered millions of Nigerians homeless with attendant havoc and wanton destruction of lives and properties.
The NEWMAP boss said the installed equipment was up and running and will be hooked to satellites which will constantly transmit messages to specific websites and emails of relevant government agencies at the state and federal levels.
The agencies include; Erosion and Flood Control Department of the Federal Ministry of Environment (FMEnv) , State Emergency Management Agencies (SEMAs), Climate Change Department of the Ministry of Environment, as well as stakeholders living in the coastal communities.
Project Coordinator of Delta State NEWMAP, Mr. Isaac Ufiofio, said NEWMAP would continue to provide necessary assistance to reduce the risk of flood and drains in the state.
Ufiofio noted that the intervention cuts across the state’s three senatorial districts, stressing that the installation in Patani will serve the riverine communities along the coastal plain.He urged stakeholders in Patani community to collaborate with government by ensuring the protection of the installed equipment.